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Dmitry Vilensky: The Art of Gift

lecture & discussion

18.11.2021 at 6 pm
Goethe-Institut Bratislava, Panenská 33, 814 82 Bratislava

Event will be held in English. It will be accessible only to fully vaccinated visitors.

Discussion moderated by Kristína Országhová.

In this talk I would like to analyze and present the possibilities of alternative models of artistic life based on the idea of the gift. How could ‘the gift economy’ challenge and change art systems and why it is important to reclaim the idea of the gift for the future of art?

The talk will reflect on the following issues:
1) What is the gift and who is homo ludens?
2) Gift as potlach
3) Feminization of artistic practice – gift and care, gift as reproductive labor
4) Gift as “Prestazione” (benefits, allowance)
5) Art that Belongs to No-one


Event is part of the Art Connected series of tranzit.sk and is organized in cooperation with the magazine Kapital.

Freedom of expression: between exploitation and solidarity
The case of Dana Schutz's painting “Open Casket” at the Whitney Biennial and many others

Seminar held by Dmitry Vilensky

19.11.2021, 10 am – 4 pm with lunch break
Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava, Drotarska cesta 44, 811 02 Bratislava. Studio of Jana Kapelová.

Event will be held in English.

For our seminar I suggest to study not only the exemplary case of attack on Dana Schutz's painting “Open Casket” at the Whitney Biennial 2017, but also to bring into attention other similar cases which comes from recent practices and from the history of art. I suggest to take a position between two different approaches - exploitation of the traumas, victims, identity and practices of commemoration, tribute to the fallen and solidarity. Each of participants needs to take a position and advocate his/her view.

In this open debate we try to articulate and develop a position for where it is possible to speak out in different situations and how to position our artistic work in the world where many are questioned and denied their possibility to talk. And how the old school of freedom of expression has stopped to work and we all are participating in determining what is the new ethical codes: how we define what is right and wrong? And for whom?

Suggested reading:
https://www.spikeartmagazine.com/articles/dana-schutzs-open-casket-controversy-around-painting-symptom-art-world-malady
and other related texts on the internet

Dmitry Vilensky (born in 1964) is an artist, educator and cultural environmentalist with no art degrees. He elicits situations and relationships. No one knows what he is up to right now: perhaps he is editing a new issue of Chto Delat’s newspaper, or maybe administering the Chto Delat Mutual Aid Fund, or editing a film, or talking with the participants of the School of Engaged Art, or making a set for a new play, or sitting in the assembly at Rosa’s House of Culture editing presentation for another conference… Most likely, he is doing all this and dozens of other activities at the same time, surrounded by various comradely compositions of bodies and minds in his hometown of Saint Petersburg, at Zoom and in many other places around the world.

Event is part of the Art Connected series of tranzit.sk and is organized in cooperation with Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava.

ERSTE Foundation is main partner of tranzit. Supported using public funding by Slovak Arts Council.

Memorials to the Weak Light, 2017